The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Egypt have signed a financial pact to lessen poverty and improve food and nutrition security by significantly bettering the incomes and resilient livelihoods for 450 rural people in the Matrouh Governorate.
Baptised as Promoting Resilience in Desert Environments (PRIDE), the project was signed by Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of IFAD alongside Sahar Nasr, Egypt’s Minister of Investment and International Cooperation.
Per the total cost of the project, which is USD 81.5 Mn, it includes a USD 61.9 Mn loan and USD 1 Mn grant from the IFAD. The government would commit USD 14 Mn, and the private sector will account for the difference.
According to Nasr, a new development axis for Egyptian agribusiness investments would be an avenue to support small investors and startups while empowering youths and innovative projects in the agricultural sector.
The project, with the ultimate objective of sustainability and inclusive growth, “Will be a transformation and an excellent example of the strategic partnership with IFAD for in priority Governorates”, says Nasr.
The narrative from the Regional Director of Near East, North Africa and Central Asia (NEN) Division at IFAD, says that: “IFAD’s collaboration through PRIDE will also link to and leverage national initiatives that the Government of Egypt is focusing on, including the Sustainable Development Strategy: Egypt Vision 2030 and a USD 1.5 Mn feddan governmental initiative aimed at increasing Egypt’s farmlands and fostering livelihood opportunities for young farmers”.
Project PRIDE will benefit from IFAD’s working experience with smallholders and settling communities on the new lands. The initiative has been tailored to look into two major challenges in the lower Nile Region – the effects of climate change and malnutrition. It will address the issues by building climate resilience in underserved communities and also offer a range of nutrition-sensitive initiatives.
According to a report, PRIDE will enhance the nutritional and socio-economic profiles and productive capacities of local communities. In tackling challenges related to nutrition, the project will improve the diets of women and children and enable them to get access to clean water and better sanitation.
Through the erection of schools and health clinics, PRIDE will provide sanitation facilities for 18,000 rural people, education for some 1,000 students and health facilities for 15,000 women every year. The project will also increase livestock productivity and support homes in newly reclaimed desert lands to grow suitable crops.
Since 1979, IFAD has financed 13 rural development programmes and projects in Egypt, investing USD 456 million or USD 842 million when co-financing is included. These projects and programmes have benefitted around 7.2 million rural people.
This development was first reported by This Day.
Featured Image: Dorothy Davis Inc.